UKSA Core Meeting 4

Thursday 3rd December 2020 6pm to 9pm

Intention

The original intention of this session was to continue two strands from Tuesday’s meeting:

  1. Finalise the working agreements (Quorum and Decision-making Section)
  2. Continue exploration of the movement’s present situation and the strategic landscape

Unfortunately, a last-minute technical problem meant that the principal facilitator, and the only one who had been present at Tuesday’s meeting - Wolfgang - was unable to contribute. Vital continuity with the previous session was therefore lost.

This left two facilitators to lead on an agenda unfamiliar to them. As a result, only the initial section of (1.) above was covered. This consisted of an exploration of the tensions underlying the discomforts some assembly members had started to express at the way the basis for representation was established when setting up the UKSA.

Meeting
  • A space for empathic listening, of fully hearing anyone carrying tensions around the process preventing them from participating wholeheartedly
    • speaking and reflections
    • framing: listening
    • access Break-out in pairs - Open facilitated listening to the tensions expressed

Notes on some of these exchanges are here.

  • During this section, assembly members expressed the following needs to the facilitators:
    • a desire to address the agenda item they had prepared for
    • a need to be able to speak more freely within the assembly, without excessive facilitation.

The main session concluded with further discussion in break-out rooms.


Afterwards

In a free discussion following the session, members covered the following points, among others:

  • How representatives are feeding back to local groups and priming them for consultation processes
  • The trust invested in representatives and the difficulty of representing diverse views
  • A need for more guidance about the different topics to be processed
  • A need for keeping language accessible
  • Ways forward to arrive at agreement on the decision-making process
    • On this last point - some groups had prepared written proposals to cover the Decision-Making Section: it was felt these could provide a starting point for drafting an integrative proposal.
A note from the Support Team

The Support Team regrets that the exploration of underlying tensions was embarked upon without first securing a clear route to its main purpose - to facilitate reaching an agreement about the decision-making process.

We are extremely grateful, however, by the seriousness and good-will shown by all those present, and feel that an important (if painful) step forwards was taken.

The Support Team was also given important feedback during this session. We hear you: an over-manicured lawn is a sterile environment; too much control is as bad as structurelessness.